Leading Group 1 winning jockey Hugh Bowman is content with barrier five for his mount Terravista in the Group 1 $1m Crown Perth-Winterbottom Stakes (1200m) at Ascot in Perth on Saturday.
The Joe Pride trained Terravista hasn’t been in the winner’s stall for over twelve months but Bowman is giving the seven year old sprinter a great chance from a good gate in the twelve horse Winterbottom Stakes field.
Bowman said from barrier five he would be able to give Terravista a cosy run without being boxed in on the fence and then have him in the clear for a free run home.
“I think that’s a gorgeous gate for him,” Bowman told Racenet.
“I’d prefer not to find myself hemmed in on the fence because it’s a tight turn and he’s a big horse that needs to be balanced to produce his best.”
Bowman has had a long association with Terravista and is feeling a lot more confident about his chances of winning than he did when he rode him in the Autumn after the pair combined for a first up second to the speedy Redzel down the Flemington straight in the Listed $150,000 Mumm Stakes (1000m) on November 3.
“That was the first time in a while that he’s run through the line so that pleased me,” Bowman said.
“I took confidence from that whereas last preparation I took no confidence out of any run. I was gutted because he just wasn’t producing what we know he can.
“I don’t think there’s any question about his ability but it’s a long time since he’s won so he needs to win.”
Terravista was the winner of the 2014 Group 1 $1m Darley Classic (1200m) at Flemington and his only win since was in the Group 2 $300,000 G1X.com.au Premiere Stakes (1200m) at Randwick during the 2015 Sydney Spring Carnival.
Pride has had to battle with feet problems with Terravista over the Autumn but Bowman is confident that is all behind him now and he is set to produce his best again in the Winterbottom Stakes.
“I understand Joe had terrible trouble with his feet last preparation but he’s very happy with him now and he felt fantastic at Flemington,” Bowman said.
“If he can improve off that run, 1200 metres is going to be more comfortable for him.”
Terravista, at $3.50, is closing in on Malaguerra who heads the market order at $3.40 for the Winterbottom Stakes at Ladbrokes.com.au.
On the third line of betting at $8 is the local sprinter Rock Magic at $8 just ahead of Sydneysider Takedown at $9 and the up and coming local galloper Star Solicitor at $9.50.